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Introduction

In many of the verses of the Qur`an, the performance of Salat al-Layl and staying awake a portion of the night - after midnight - in the worship of Allah (Glory and Greatness be to Him) has been mentioned, of which, we present some of these verses:

وَالْمُسْتَغْفِرِينَ بِالأَسْحٌارِ.

“…and those who ask forgiveness in the morning times.”

وَمِنَ اللَّيْلِ فَتَهَجَّدْ بِهِ نٌافِلَةً لَّكَ.

“Say your special (tahajjud) prayer during some part of the night…”

وَالَّذِينَ يَبِيتُونَ لِرَبِّهِمْ سُجَّدًا وَقِيٌامًا.

“And they who pass the night prostrating themselves before their Lord and standing.”

تَتَجٌافَى جُنُوبُهُمْ عَنِ الْمَضٌاجِعِ يَدْعُونَ رَبَّهُمْ خَوْفًا وَطَمَعًا وَمِمٌّا رَزَقْنٌاهُمْ يُنفِقُونَ.

“Their sides draw away from (their) beds, they call upon their Lord in fear and in hope, and they spend (benevolently) out of what We have given them.”

كٌانُوا قَلِيلاً مِّنَ اللَّيْلِ مٌا يَهْجَعُونَ. وَبِلأَسْحٌارِ هُمْ يَسْتَغْفِرُونَ

“They used to sleep but little in the night. And in the morning they asked forgiveness.”

The Salat al-Layl was Wajib upon the Messenger of Allah1 and no Prophet had been sent before him except that it was obligatory upon them as well.2

In the ahadith from the Ahlul Bayt (peace be upon all of them), it has been emphatically mentioned that:

1. Salat al-Layl protects one during the daytime.3

2. Salat al-Layl is a Kaffarah for the sins committed in the day.4

3. That house in which Salat al-Layl is recited beams with light for those who are in the heavens just as the stars beam with light for those who are on earth.5

4. The great and noble people of our nation are those who are protectors of the Qur`an and who stay awake the night in worship.6

5. There are three things which raise a person’s rank and station:

(i) Initiating the greeting to a fellow Muslim,

(ii) feeding poor people,

(iii) Salat in the darkness of the night when all other people are busy sleeping.7

6. Salat al-Layl makes one’s face beautiful; beautifies one’s etiquette; gives a pleasant smell to one’s body and increases one’s daily sustenance. It also removes sorrow and grief and gives strength to the eyes.8

7. One who does not read the Salat al-Layl is not considered as a Shi`a of the Ahlul Bayt.9

8. One who is not able to perform the Salat al-Layl is truly a very unfortunate person.10

9. Committing sins is one of the reasons for one to be unsuccessful in the performance of Salat al-Layl.11

10. The performance of Salat al-Layl leads to gaining the pleasure of Allah (Glory and Greatness be to Him); love of the Angels; is the Sunnah of the Prophets; leads to the light of true recognition of Allah (Glory and Greatness be to Him); is the foundation of belief; tranquility of the soul; destruction of Shaitan; a weapon against one’s enemies; acceptance of one’s supplications; acceptance of one’s actions; increases the blessings in one’s sustenance; intercession when the Angel of Death comes; brightness in the grave; protects the person while in the grave; ease in the answering of the angels Munkir and Nakir and is the companion and friend in the grave.12

  • 1. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 122
  • 2. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 136; Tafsir Al-Qummi, Pg. 701
  • 3. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 154; Mahasin Barqi, Pg. 53
  • 4. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 136
  • 5. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 161; Rawdhatu `l-Wai`dhin, Pg. 320
  • 6. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 138; Amali Shaikh aduq, Pg. 141
  • 7. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 141; Khisal, Vol. 1, Pg. 42
  • 8. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 86, Pg. 153, Thawab Al-A’mal, Pg. 38
  • 9. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 162; Maqnah of Shaikh Mufid, Pg. 111
  • 10. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 164; Ma`ani Al-Akhbar, Pg. 342
  • 11. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 152; Tawhid Shaikh aduq, Pg. 17
  • 12. Bihar Al-Anwar, Vol. 87, Pg. 161; Irshad Al-Qulub, Pg. 316

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